MS Polarlys - Photo Tour

Take a look around the interiors and open decks of MS Polarlys with our full photo tour,

These pictures were taken whilst she was alongside in Bergen, preparing for the 11-day round trip she operates from the city along the coast of Norway. The route is popular with cruise tourists keen to experience 'the most beautiful voyage in the world', and also serves as a lifeline for many smaller communities in Norway's more isolated north. 

Hurtigruten MS Polarlys alongside in Bergen, Norway
MS Polarlys alongside at the Hurtigruteterminalen, Bergen
EXTERIOR

Polarlys was built in Fosen, Norway, and entered service in 1996. She is one of Hurtigruten's class of six near-sisters, affectionately known as the '90s ships'. With a length of 123m and a gross tonnage of 11,340 she can accommodate 619 passengers, with berths for 473.

Hurtigruten MS Polarlys in Bergen, Norway
Polarlys alongside in Bergen
Despite her 18 years of service Polarlys is a nicely presented ship, with an attractive, well-balanced profile. Her smart red and black hull makes her instantly recognisable as a member of the Hurtigruten fleet.

Hurtigruten MS Polarlys in Bergen, Norway
Polarlys alongside in Bergen
Polarlys has a lot in common with her near-sister ships in the fleet, but a few notable additions to her exteriors (such as the angular glass structures on either side of her superstructure) make her stand out a little from this crowd.

Hurtigruten MS Polarlys in Bergen, Norway
Polarlys as seen from the terminal building, just before boarding
Those boarding in Bergen pass through the modern and comfortable Hurtigruteterminalen, where a safety briefing is given before passengers make their way along the glass walkway to their ship.

Hurtigruten MS Polarlys in Bergen, Norway
Large windows make the main stairwell a light and open space
INTERIORS

Heading one deck down from the boarding area brings you to Cafe Lokalen, the casual dining venue on board, which sells hot and cold food and drinks throughout the day. This area has a relaxing atmosphere and pleasant decor.

Hurtigruten MS Polarlys - Cafe Lokalen
Cafe Lokalen on board Polarlys
Hurtigruten MS Polarlys - Cafe Lokalen
The self-service counter in Cafe Lokalen
Hurtigruten MS Polarlys - Cafe Lokalen
A seating area in Cafe Lokalen
In one corner of the cafe is the shop, which stocks a selection of gifts, clothes and travel products.

Hurtigruten MS Polarlys - Shop
The shop on Polarlys
At the aft end of Deck 4 is the Polarlyset Restaurant. The main dining venue on board, this room has an open seating for breakfast and lunch, and assigned tables for dinner each evening. The chairs here may be slightly unusual in design, but overall this space feels very warm and inviting. 

Hurtigruten MS Polarlys - Polarlyset Restaurant
The Polarlyset Restaurant
Hurtigruten MS Polarlys - Polarlyset Restaurant
Tables in the Polarlyset Restaurant set ready for dinner
Heading along Deck 4, the arcade provides a pleasant passageway linking the restaurant to the cafe, and to the lounges and conference rooms located at the forward end. The decor here, with warm woods and marble finishes, definitely helps to set Polarlys apart from the other 90's ships.

Hurtigruten MS Polarlys - Arcade
The arcade links the Restaurant to other public rooms on board
The Midnattsol Bar is a large and appealing room located at the forward end on Deck 4. A fully stocked bar and a small stage/dance floor make this a versatile and popular area. Four conference rooms are accessed directly from the Midnattsol Bar. These were unfortunately not available to photograph during my tour.

Hurtigruten MS Polarlys - Midnattsol Bar
The Midnattsol Bar, forward on Deck 4
Hurtigruten MS Polarlys - Midnattsol Bar
The Midnattsol Bar
A large expanse of glass covers the atrium-like areas either side of the forward staircase, which rise through the main passenger decks. The remainder of the public rooms are located up on Deck 7.

Hurtigruten MS Polarlys - Atrium
These spaces either side of the main stairwell are a nice addition to her interiors

The observation lounge, located midships. offers fantastic views and a comfortable environment with a small bar and equipment for live music performances which are often held here.

Hurtigruten MS Polarlys - Observation Lounge
The Observation Lounge and Bar
Hurtigruten MS Polarlys - Observation Lounge
Seating in the Observation Lounge
Just aft of this is the Library, which has a similar decor to the observation lounge, and enjoys the same fantastic views.

Hurtigruten MS Polarlys - Library
The Library on board Polarlys
Hurtigruten MS Polarlys - Library
A fireplace adds to the inviting atmosphere in the Library
Back at the main staircase, this open area gives a great view along the side of the ship, and down to the promenade deck below.

Hurtigruten MS Polarlys
The view from Deck 7
At the forward end of Deck 7 is the Panorama Lounge, A now standard feature on board the more modern ships in the Hurtigruten fleet, this relaxing and pleasant room has large full-height windows running along three walls. A calm colour scheme ensures the focus remains on the fantastic views on show along the route.

Hurtigruten MS Polarlys - Panorama Lounge
The Panorama Lounge, forward on Deck 7
Hurtigruten MS Polarlys - Panorama Lounge
Sit back and enjoy the views; forward facing seats in the Panorama Lounge
OPEN DECKS

Our tour of the outside spaces on Polarlys begins on Deck 7, where this covered seating area provides a place to enjoy the fresh air even when the weather turns. One nice addition to this space is the bar and BBQ, a feature which again sets Polarlys apart from her near-sister ships.

Hurtigruten MS Polarlys - Open Deck and Outdoor Bar
The covered area on Deck 7
Hurtigruten MS Polarlys - Outdoor Bar
There's no mistaking which ship you're on
Hurtigruten MS Polarlys - Sun Deck
The Hurtigruten Logo is proudly displayed on the funnel
The sun deck is a large open space, with chairs and loungers to soak up the sun when, and if, it does make an appearance.

Hurtigruten MS Polarlys - Sun Deck
The Sun Deck
Hurtigruten MS Polarlys - Sun Deck
The Sun Deck
Back down on Deck 5 is the promenade deck. This wraps completely around the deck, and at the forward end passes directly beneath the wings of the navigation bridge, offering a clear view of the mooring deck below.

Hurtigruten MS Polarlys - Promenade Deck
The promenade deck passes under the bridge wings
Hurtigruten MS Polarlys - Promenade Deck
Polarlys' forward superstructure and bridge
Hurtigruten MS Polarlys - Forward Mooring Deck
The view forwards; the ship's bow and mooring deck
Hurtigruten MS Polarlys - Lifeboats
Lifeboats are situated along the promenade on Deck 5
A large loading door in the ship's side provides access to the car decks (Polarlys has the capacity for up to 35 cars) and cargo spaces.

Hurtigruten MS Polarlys - Loading Door
Polarlys' large loading door
ACCOMMODATION

A range of cabins are available on Polarlys. The majority of these are standard 2- and 3-berth inside and outside rooms, all of which have en suite facilities and offer a clean and practical base for the voyage. The following picture shows a standard 2-berth outside room, with one bed that converts into a sofa, and a small vanity desk and mirror.

Hurtigruten MS Polarlys - Standard 2-Berth Cabin
A standard 2-berth outside cabin
Varying slightly in configuration, this 3-berth cabin on Deck 2 has two small portholes, instead of the picture window featured in cabins higher on the ship.

Hurtigruten MS Polarlys - Standard 3-Berth Cabin
A standard 3-berth outside cabin
A selection of suites and mini suites are also available, but were unfortunately not open to photograph during my tour, with the passengers having already moved in.

FINAL IMPRESSIONS

Although very similar to her near-sister ships Nordlys, Nordnorge, Nordkapp, Richard With and Kong Harald, Polarlys feels, in many ways, a cut above her fleetmates. Her interiors make extensive use of high quality woods and warm colours, creating a very inviting and relaxing atmosphere on board. Polarlys would certainly make a pleasant base for this beautiful trip along the Norwegian coast.

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